Heparan Sulfate in the Amyloidosis and Inflammation of Alzheimer’s Disease
Sammanfattning: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder, with extensive evidence implicating the misfolding, aggregation and deposition of the amyloid-β (Aβ) peptide as central to the pathogenesis. Heparan sulfate (HS) is an interactive glycosaminoglycan, attached to core proteins as HS proteoglycans (HSPGs). HSPGs are present on cell surfaces and in the extracellular matrix where they facilitate multiple signaling functions, but HS is also consistently present in all amyloid deposits, including those of AD. In amyloidosis HS has been studied as an aggregation template, promoting fibril formation and serving a scaffold function in the resulting deposits. The objective of this thesis was to assess how cell surface HS is potentially implicated in Aβ amyloidosis and the associated neuroinflammation of AD. In AD brain we determined that HS predominantly accumulated in Aβ deposits with dense cores and found glial-expressed HSPGs within these deposits. Aβ elevated HSPG levels in primary glial cultures, implicating activated glia as one source of the Aβ-associated HS. Next, we determined that microglial HSPGs are critical for the upregulation of interleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α following exposure to lipopolysaccharide, an established inflammatory insult. Together these results raise the possibility that Aβ-induced expression of microglial HSPGs may promote neuroinflammation. Multiple mechanisms of Aβ toxicity have been proposed and different Aβ assemblies exert their toxicity through alternative routes. We found that three different preparations of Aβ aggregates all exhibited HS-dependent cytotoxicity, which in part correlated with Aβ internalization. Furthermore, heparin treatment attenuated Aβ cytotoxicity and uptake. In Aβ-positive AD microvasculature, HS deposited with Apolipoprotein E (ApoE) and its receptor, the low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein 1 (LRP1). In cell culture, HS and LRP1 co-operated in Aβ interactions and the addition of ApoE increased the levels of cell-associated Aβ in a HS- and LRP1-dependent manner. This ApoE-mediated increase in cell-associated Aβ may promote toxicity and vascular degeneration, but equally HS-mediated internalization of Aβ could represent a clearance route across the blood-brain-barrier.The findings presented here illustrate multiple roles for cell-surface HSPGs in interactions relevant to the pathogenesis of AD.
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